Better diversity in size and shape has been on consumer’s minds for some time. British online retailer boohoo continues to take on this challenge, continuing to invest in its curve range to offer plus-sized outfits for any occasion.
This week, boohoo launched its first-ever Australasian curve edit, choosing to partner with New Zealand body positive influencer Riley Hemson, who boasts an impressive 350k followers on Instagram. The new collection ranges in sizes 6-28.
An Australasian spokesperson for boohoo, Melisa Woodgate, says, “we proudly have an ever-growing curve segment which currently makes up a significant portion of our sales mix, so it’s fantastic to be partnering with a local talent for this Curve edit. Knowing our curve market and who they are sourcing their inspiration from is helping us grow from strength to strength in this segment across Australia and New Zealand.”
Speaking of the new range from the shopper’s perspective, Hemson shares:
“I love that boohoo offers on-trend designs in a range of shapes and sizes as it’s not always easy to come by – it’s why I’ve always shopped at boohoo and was excited to collaborate with them for this edit. Everything I do on social media is all about empowering women, encouraging them to wear what they want, and to love yourself and your body. I think it’s really important that women know they’re more than their body and this campaign really embodies that. As it’s boohoo’s first local curve campaign, I’m so excited to be involved, to be an inspiration to women and encourage others to wear that tight dress and crop top.”
It’s not the first time Hemson has collaborated with a well known global retailer, recently partnering with Swedish activewear brand aim’n for its Oceania-exclusive ‘Vitamin C’ range.
Like aim’n, by offering an Australasian-exclusive range, boohoo is taking on local retailers directly. And there may be some way to go before boohoo encounters real competition given its reputation for quick shipping and easy returns, as well as an extensive offering in size.
Locally, there’s an unfortunate lack of training and skillset to design and manufacture plus-size. Particular designers believe there isn’t a demand to warrant the costs involved to expand their size range.
However, others challenge these reasons as anti-fat, saying tapping into this under-represented market has brought them success. Further, like Hemson, more consumers are calling for representation and fighting outdated societal stigmas.
“I want to do more things in the industry and see it become more and more diverse. The ultimate goal is for mainstream brands to be catering to all sizes”, says Hemson.
For now, what is certain is that retailers like boohoo and figureheads such as Hemson are leading the way towards a more inclusive landscape. Retailers, take note.